Chapter Titles In The Book I Someday Want To Write About My Son

I’ll probably never get around to writing this book, but I hope I do. I’d like to read it when it’s done. Should be interesting. Anyway, here, in no particular order, is a partial list of the chapter titles from the book.

In which I discuss the circumstances in which we first found him.

A Tale Of Two Cities
In which I discuss our “courtship”: the expanse of time between meeting Jonathan and moving him into our home.

Free At Last, Free At Last
In which I discuss the days leading up to his adoption and the great relief we felt when it was finally done.

The Path Of Most Resistance
In which I discuss his tendency to perform every task in the most difficult, cumbersome, awkward way.

Love Will Tear Us Apart
In which I discuss the initial effects of Jonathan’s presence upon my marriage.

And Along Came Emmi
In which I discuss the birth of my first niece and the effect on Jonathan.

Millions Of Peaches
In which I discuss Jonathan’s uncanny ability to identify songs after one hearing and the possibility that his knowledge of alternative rock will someday be encyclopedic (assuming I can keep him from listening to too much of his sister’s Hannah Montana, which could corrupt him).

Can You Make It Bigger?
In which I discuss some of the peculiarities of Jonathan’s language development.

It’s My Birthday!
In which I discuss Jonathan’s early insistence that every day was birthday (and also the birthday of Joe from Blue’s Clues (Joe, by the way, is no Steve, and never will be)).

Pete And Repeat
In which I discuss the reasons why Jonathan’s media consumption is now very, very limited.

Angels Watching Over Us
In which I discuss Bethanna, and how very helpful they were to us throughout the process.

Kindred Spirits
In which I discuss the strange, unique, and strong bond between my father and my son.

Two Things

As evidenced by this photo:

1) We have another cat. I can’t believe we have another cat. I don’t even like cats. Her name is Maddie. She showed up on our neighbors’ back porch a couple weeks ago, and after a thorough but fruitless search for her true owner, they decided they might keep her. Then their dad said no. Smart man. I said yes, because I’m a sucker for a pretty face. She’s a cute kitten now, but soon she’ll be an evil cat, just like Jill.

2) The Apple Store at Park City is now open for business. We were in line shortly after 8:00 this morning and we got t-shirts. When we left the store, the line was still ridiculously long. Everybody I talked to that didn’t go to the store simply could not fathom what all the noise at the mall was about.

I’m Baaaack

Whew, that was a longer break than I expected to take.

So what have I been up to?

Well, for starters, I moved. That used up a pretty good chunk of time. And money. But my house is great. We’re out in the country now. Nice and quiet. Very peaceful. This is my house (thanks to Bill for the aerial photo):

Other than that, life has been progressing like it usually does.

I’ll be posting more updates in the coming days, including some of the story of how we came to adopt Jonathan.

Lying Here, Doing Nothing

This morning, as Jen and I lay in bed, nearly motionless, at an hour far past that which should have seen us up and about, she said, “I feel really lazy, just lying here doing nothing.”

“Hey,” I said. “You’ve earned it. You deserve to lie here doing nothing for a while. Go back to sleep.”

On Thursday morning, I woke up and went about my routine, just like every other weekday. I checked my email, took a quick look at NetNewsWire Lite, shaved, took a shower, gathered my gear, packed my lunch, kissed Jen goodbye, looked in on Grace, and looked in our foster daughter.

But it was the last time I’d look in on her.

The social worker arrived at 2:45 PM, a full fifteen minutes early, to come and take her back to her mother.

I had left work a few hours early so I could be home when she left. Her departure was kind of anticlimactic in the end. The social worker took the baby, strapped her in her car seat, and drove her out of our lives.

Jen, Gracie, and I stood in the front yard for a moment or two and blinked back tears. She was gone. We walked inside and closed the door, and then started cleaning up and packing up baby gear. More tears came, but we were okay.

We had picked up this baby from the hospital when she was two days old, in mid-February. She’d been with us ever since. Now, at just over five months old, she was going back to her mother.

I tried not to get attached. But she wiggled her way into my heart, and she had become my girl, a title I’d previously bestowed upon only Jen and Grace. She knew me, and I could see in her face that she thought I was her Daddy. When I came home from work, she smiled and giggled. She knew my tricks. When I held her up, she arched backward to get me to swing her gently back and scoop her up again. Then she’d smile a crooked smile at me and lean back again. I knew her most ticklish spots, and I knew which of my silly faces made her smile and laugh.

As I stood in the yard and watched her drive away, I wondered what would go through her head as she cried for us. Would she wonder why we weren’t coming? Would she think we’d abandoned her?

The consolation, of course, is bittersweet at best: within a few weeks, she’ll forget all about us.

Last night, Grace went to sleep at my parents’ house so that Jen and I could have the first night to ourselves we’ve had since February. This morning, we slept in, more for Jen’s sake than for mine.

Jen’s the real hero. She was the one who did the late night feedings and diaper changes. She was the one who carted her to the doctor. She was the one who still took care of Grace and me while she took on this baby. She was on who hadn’t had a decent night’s sleep in five and a half months.

So this morning, as Jen and I lay in bed, nearly motionless, at an hour far past that which should have seen us up and about, she said, “I feel really lazy, just lying here doing nothing.”

“Hey,” I said. “You’ve earned it. You deserve to lie here doing nothing for a while. Go back to sleep.”

And she did.

The Life You Save

I passed my first aid/CPR/AED test this morning. That’s cool, because I’ve been meaning to brush up on CPR for a while now. Jen and I took some first aid training a few months back in our initial foster parent training class, but they didn’t cover CPR.

So, next time we’re together, please feel free to have a heart attack, break a bone, or burn yourself. Except for you, David: you’re done. No more of that.

Interestingly, the instructor taught me how to save someone’s life (or try valiantly) in about three hours and one written quiz. However, becoming a Microsoft Certified Systems Engineer takes about twelve weeks (if you take a typical class), and, what, seven major computer-based tests.

Of course, if our Active Directory ever goes down, it may well be a life-threatening situation for me (or possibly those around me).